Friday, August 16, 2013

Mount Ball

      Below is a photograph from a recent 4 day backpack trip. It is a picture of Mount Ball reflecting in Shadow Lake, Banff National Park. There is a lodge and cabins about a kilometer from here but we were tenting it, setting up camp at a different location each night.
    It can be a challenge to set out on a 4 or 5 day backpack trip in the mountains. Walking 30 - 50 km in this type of terrain with a heavy backpack can take it out of you. Every year I am always looking for ways to shave ounces off the weight I need to carry, especially now that I also carry good quality camera gear. One thing I usually do is take just one lens, an 18-200 zoom lens and leave my wide angle at home. This lens is much more versatile than the wide angle as it allows me to take photographs of the surrounding mountains and also of more intimate landscapes of the area, the flora and fauna for example.
    The problem with this philosophy is that it is really difficult to capture the wide sweeping vistas of the backcountry. Many of the lakes are nestled right up against a huge mountain and it can be difficult to include sky, mountain, lake and foreground in one shot without a wide angle lens. I'm not getting any younger and carrying more camera gear, adding weight to a 40- 50lb pack is not my first choice. So what I did with the shot below is take 4 vertical shots of the area and later stitch them together at home to produce a panoramic view. It requires quite a bit of post processing time but the advantage is the image can print a lot bigger as it has a lot more mega pixels than just a single shot, and most importantly, a lighter pack. Don't forget to click on the image for a better look.

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